The name O. J. Simpson strikes varying cords whenever it surfaces in media circles. He is indeed a man of numerous talents who, however, always managed to find himself in the most difficult of controversies. As a professional athlete, he enjoyed a successful 11-season long career as a running back in America’s National Football League (NFL). Upon retirement, he made a successful transition into acting and sports broadcasting.
All the success that O. J. Simpson had as a sports celebrity and broadcaster have however been overshadowed by the series of heinous criminal charges he has faced in recent times. In 1994, he was charged with the murder of his second wife Nicole Brown and a friend of hers which led to a highly publicized 11-month trial.
Miraculously, Simpson was able to get himself off the charges. However, less than 10 years later, O. J. Simpson found himself in the middle of fresh legal troubles after he led a group of men on a botched armed robbery operation. Indeed, O. J. Simpson’s life has been an infamously eventful one.
O. J. Simpson’s Bio
O. J. Simpson was born Orenthal James Simpson on July 9, 1947, in San Francisco, California. His mother Eunice (née Durden) worked as a hospital administrator and his father Jimmy Lee Simpson worked as a professional cook and bank custodian. His parents’ marriage soon fell apart and Simpson was raised by his mother alone.
As a teenager, O. J. Simpson was part of a street gang named “the Persian Warriors” which resulted in several run-ins with the law. After several arrests, the young Simpson had a chance meeting with retired baseball star Willie Mays whose counseling inspired him to reshape his life.
Simpson had his high school education at Galileo High School in San Francisco, where he displayed his incredible talents in American football. However, upon graduation from high school, he did not receive much attention from college recruiters because of his unimpressive high school results. In 1965, he enrolled at the City College of San Francisco. There, he displayed exceptional football talents after which he received admission offers from several other colleges to have him transfer to their schools.
O. J. Simpson eventually settled with the University of Southern California (USC) where he played in the running back position in 1967 and 1968. Simpson was indeed a star during his career as a college football player. He won numerous laurels including the Heisman Trophy, the Maxwell Award, and Walter Camp Award.
In 1969, Simpson was drafted by the American Football League’s Buffalo Bills on a contract which was at that time the highest ever received by a professional sportsman. Contrary to expectations, Simpson struggled in his first few seasons with the Buffalo Bills. His career, however, took a much brighter turn in the 1972 season.
In 1973, he became the first player to attain the highly coveted 2,000-yard rushing milestone for which he received the NFL Most Valuable Player Award. He continued in his excellent form for the Bills until the 1977 season when his career was truncated by an injury. He later joined the San Francisco 49ers for the 1978 and 1979 seasons after which he finally went into retirement.
Upon retirement, Simpson maximized his status as a sports celeb and promptly launched an acting career. He made guest appearances on several TV shows and also featured in a number of movies. In addition to his acting career, Simpson also doubled as a football commentator.
Wife, Daughter, Son
Retired American football star O. J. Simpson is currently unmarried. However, he has been married twice in the past. He got into his first marriage at the age of 19 to Marguerite L. Whitley who was his childhood sweetheart. Their wedding took place on June 24, 1967 but ended in a divorce in March 1979.
As a couple, they had 3 children together: sons Arnelle (born in 1968) and Jason (born in 1970) and daughter Aaren (1977–1979). Aaren Simpson tragically passed away in 1979 after drowning in the family’s swimming pool.
In 1977, Simpson met another young woman named Nicole Brown who was working at a Beverly Hills club as a waitress. Though he was still legally married to his wife, he promptly struck up a relationship with Brown. On February 2, 1985, O. J. Simpson got married to Nicole Brown. They had 2 children together; a daughter named Sydney Brooke Simpson (born in 1985) and a son named Justin Ryan Simpson (born in 1988).
The 7-year marriage between O. J. Simpson and Nicole Brown was, however, marred by allegations of spousal abuse and eventually ended in a divorce in 1992. The following year, the couple made a number of attempts to mend their fences all to no avail.
The Simpson-Brown relationship took a really bizarre and tragic turn on June 12, 1994, when the dead bodies of Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ron Goldman were found in Brown’s residence in the Brentwood area of Los Angeles. Simpson was later named as a prime suspect in the murder of his estranged wife which marked the beginning of one of the most highly publicized criminal trials of the 20th century.
Where Is O. J. Simpson Now?
After 11 months of trial, O. J. Simpson was able to wriggle himself out of the murder charges leveled against him. On October 3, 1995, he was acquitted of the 1994 murders of Nicole Brown and Ron Goldman. However, even though he got off the hook, Simpson’s career and public image were never able to recover from the scandal.
In 1997, the family of the second murder victim Ron Goldman filed a civil case against Simpson. He was found liable in the death of the 2 victims and ordered to pay the sum of $33,500,000 in damages. After that, Simpson struggled financially and was still unable to meet up with the demands of the civil judgment.
Throughout the early 2000s, Simpson had numerous run-ins with the law ranging from battery, robbery, drug trafficking and several other crimes. Eventually, he landed himself in deep legal trouble once again in 2007. On September 13, 2007, he led a group of men on a robbery operation which took place at the Palace Station Hotel located in Las Vegas. Simpson and his accomplices were arrested just 2 days after the robbery which marked the beginning of yet another set of legal troubles for the former sports superstar.
On October 3, 2008, American football Hall of Famer O. J. Simpson was convicted of twelve criminal charges including armed robbery and kidnapping. He was sentenced to a total of 33 years in prison with eligibility for parole after serving 9 years. On October 1, 2017, O. J. Simpson was granted parole and released from jail having served only 9 years behind bars. He is indeed a free man, unfortunately, more people know him as a felon instead of the great sportsman he used to be.
Is He Dead?
O. J. Simpson has had quite an eventful life. At one point he was loved as one of the greatest sportsmen in America and at another, he was regarded as the most hated criminal in the US. Indeed, he has had a taste of the highest and lowest points of life. Be that as it may, O. J. Simpson is still very much alive and well. His public image may be a far cry from what it could have been, however, he is still alive and kicking.
Height And Weight
Height: 6′ 1″ or 185 cm
Weight: 91 kg or 200 lbs
In his youthful days as an athlete, O. J. Simpson was known to be trim weighing 210 pounds on his 6′ 1″ frame. During his 9 years in prison, the embattled sports star put on a lot of weight due to poor dieting and a number of other factors which brought his body weight to an astonishing 300 pounds plus.
However, when he realized he could be out of jail before the end of 2017, Simpson decided to work on his weight. With the aid of a fellow inmate who was a bodybuilder and some adjustments to his diet, the Hall of Famer was able to drastically reduce his weight to 210 pounds, much like his pre-prison days.